The Pall Mall Gazette was an evening newspaper founded in London on 7 February 1865 by George Murray Smith, with Frederick Greenwood as its first editor. It began as a Conservative newspaper, but under different owners it was sometimes supportive of the Liberal Party.
Under the leadership of William Stead, editor from 1883 to 1890, the Pall Mall Gazette confronted important social issues of the day. It was an early adopter of investigative journalism, as in its report on child prostitution in London, which led to a change in the legal age of consent from 13 to 16. Stead increased the newspaper’s circulation and influence by positioning it as “the great tribune of the poor”, and introduced such innovations as bold headlines, pictorial illustrations, provocative leading articles, and contributions by leading authors including William Archer, Bernard Shaw, George Meredith, and Oscar Wilde. Stead is also credited with introducing the interview into British newspaper reporting.
The newspaper was acquired by William Waldorf Astor in 1896, and Sir Douglas Straight was installed as editor until 1909. Under his successor, F. J. Higginbottom, circulation declined before recovering under the editorship of James Louis Garvin between 1911 and 1915. But the paper’s circulation declined once again under its last editor, James Louis Garvin, and it was absorbed into the Evening Standard in 1923.